LACEY – Three employees at an organization that assists Ocean County veterans were charged with embezzling from it.
Vetwork, a nonprofit in Lacey Township, helps veterans find employment and housing. It was partially funded by a grant from the county.
The organization is overseen by a board of directors. This board commissioned an audit which revealed certain employees getting extra payroll checks. They had contacted the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Economic Crimes Unit about it.
The prosecutor’s office announced that these employees were charged with embezzling between February and June of 2019:
Jesse Violante, 33, of Tuckerton, was the director of Vetwork. He allegedly received five extra payments totaling $5,855.20.
Mary Anne Dileo, 67, of Manahawkin, was the office manager who processed payroll. She allegedly received 26 duplicate payments totaling $19,588.
Gary Mclain, 33, of Little Egg Harbor, was in charge of community outreach. He allegedly received five duplicate payments totaling $4,972.
These payments were not authorized by the board, and they were not included in documents submitted to Ocean County for funding.
They were charged with Theft by Unlawful Taking. Charges are merely accusations until proven in a court of law.
Violante and Dileo surrendered to law enforcement, but Mclain currently has a warrant out for his arrest. Anyone with information regarding Mclain’s whereabouts is encouraged to contact Det. Lindsey Llauget of the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 929-2027, extension 3462.
“It is disturbing, to say the least, that employees of a nonprofit organization designed to assist our veterans here in Ocean County would steal from that very organization,” said Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer. “These defendants lined their pockets with money that was intended to help those who sacrificed so much for our country. This type of conduct is truly shameful.”
He commended the work of the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Economic Crimes Unit, with the assistance of the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office, for the investigation that led to these charges.